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No. 14 Gorillas Return Home to Face SBU on Family Day - KOAM TV 7

No. 14 Gorillas Return Home to Face SBU on Family Day

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Press Release Pittsburg State University:

The Pittsburg State University football team, the No. 14 ranked team in NCAA Division II, will return to the friendly confines of Brandenburg Field/Carnie Smith Stadium Saturday (Sept. 21) to host Southwest Baptist University in Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association action.

Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. (CDT).

Pittsburg State, the winningest all-time NCAA Division II program, brings a 2-0 record, including a 2-0 mark in MIAA play, into Saturday's contest. The Gorillas have opened the 2013 campaign with back-to-back lopsided wins over Northeastern State (45-6) and Central Oklahoma (65-24).

Southwest Baptist enters Saturday's action 0-2 overall and 0-1 in the MIAA after dropping a pair of hard-fought decisions to Truman (40-37) and Lindenwood (35-27).  The Bearcats welcomed back 10 starters (five offense, five defense) from a 3-8 squad in 2012.

The Coaches
Tim Beck has compiled a 28-10 (.737) career record in his fourth season as head coach at Pitt State.  

Beck led his alma mater (PSU, '88) to the 2011 NCAA Division II National Championship two seasons ago, earning national coach of the year honors from Liberty Mutual, the Don Hansen Football Committee and FieldTurf™.

Beck became the school's 14th all-time head football coach in December 2009, after serving for 23 seasons as an assistant coach for the Gorillas including 16 years as the team's offensive coordinator from 1994-2009.

In his first season leading the Gorillas, Beck guided Pitt State to a 6-6 record and a victory in the 2010 Mineral Water Bowl.  In 2011, Beck led the Gorillas to the program's second NCAA national championship and the school's fourth national title overall in a 13-1 campaign. Pitt State captured the MIAA Championship and ultimately the NCAA-II National Championship with a 35-21 victory over Wayne (Mich.) State on Dec. 17, 2011.

Last year, the Gorillas opened the season 5-0 before finishing the year 7-3 overall.

During his 16 seasons as offensive coordinator, the Gorilla offense consistently ranked among the finest units in NCAA Division II.
In 2008, Beck was selected the inaugural NCAA Division II Coordinator of the Year by FootballScoop.com, following a vote of his coaching peers.

In 2004, Beck's offensive unit established itself as the most prolific squad in the history of NCAA football.  PSU shattered a 118-year-old scoring record, scoring an amazing 837 points (55.8 ppg).  His squad also set the NCAA all division records for rushing (5,320 yards) and total offense (8,976 yards).

Beck's teams led Division II in scoring in two of the last six years (2004, 2006) and ranked in the top two nationally in total offense three times in the last six seasons (2004, 2005, 2006).  His squads ranked among the national rushing leaders every season, leading Division II in 1995 (318.8 ypg) and 2004 (354.7 ypg).  Beck's "multiple choice" option attack also compiled 16,483 passing yards (216.9 ypg) and 143 aerial touchdowns during the last six years.

Pitt State averaged a staggering 38.8 points and 442.5 yards of total offense per game during his tenure as offensive coordinator.

Prior to assuming the offensive coordinator's role, Beck served two years as Pitt State's defensive coordinator (1992-93).  He became a full-time assistant on the Pitt State staff in 1989, after serving first as a student assistant (1987) and then as a graduate assistant (1988).

Southwest Baptist's Craig Schuler is in his first year leading the Bearcats. Schuler (Benedictine, '87) came to SBU after nine seasons as assistant head coach/offensive coordinator at MIAA rival Lindenwood. This will be his first meeting vs. Pitt State.

The Pitt State-Southwest Baptist Series
This will be the 21st all-time meeting between the Gorillas and the Bearcats in a series that dates back to the 1989 season.

Pitt State holds an unblemished 20-0-0 advantage in the series. The Gorillas have averaged a 57-19 victory over the Bearcats in the last seven meetings, dating back to the 2002 season (SBU played an independent football schedule from 2008-11 and did not face PSU in those seasons.)

Last year, Pitt State claimed a 52-9 road win over SBU at Bolivar, Mo., on Sept. 15, 2012. The Gorillas overcame an early 7-0 deficit to score 52 unanswered points with sophomore quarterback Tony Abenoja passing for 259 yards and two scores in the contest. Junior wide receiver John Brown made six catches for 119 yards and a touchdown.

PSU's Regular Season Success
Pitt State has won 258 of its last 304 regular season games, posting a phenomenal 258-44-2 (.852) mark during the past 29 seasons (1985-2013).

PSU is 141-14-1 at home, 111-22-1 on the road and 4-8-0 at neutral sites in the regular season during that span.

Pitt State in the AFCA Top 25 Poll
Pitt State has been ranked in Division II's top 10 97 times in the last 180 polls and the Gorillas have been ranked in the top 25 poll in 154 of 180 weeks overall (dating back to the 1999 season).

The Gorillas, who climbed to No. 14 in this week's poll, have been ranked in the Division II top 15 136 times in the last 180 polls. [for complete poll, see page 4]

Gorillas in "The Pitt"
The Gorillas have compiled a 333-120-12 (.729) record at Brandenburg Field/Carnie Smith Stadium since the facility opened in 1924.

The Gorillas are 165-20-1 (.890) at home during the past 29 seasons (1985-2013). Pitt State is 143-14-1 (.908) in 158 regular season home games and 22-6 (.786) in 28 post-season home games during that span.

SBU is 10-24 (.294) away from Bolivar since 2005, but the Bearcats are 7-5 on road trips since the 2011 campaign.

Ground Game PSU's Bread and Butter…
Pitt State's success can be directly linked to its ability to rush the football.

Since the 1986 season, PSU has rushed for 200-plus yards in 279 of 331 overall games.  The Gorillas have posted a 2  48-31-1 (.888) record when they eclipse 200 yards rushing.  Pitt State is an even more impressive 136-6-0 (.958) when it eclipses 300 yards rushing.

By contrast, PSU is just 23-30-1 (.435) in the handful of games when it has been held below 200 yards rushing.

Since 1986, PSU has rushed the ball for the highest yardage total among all NCAA Division II programs, with 95,636 yards (including postseason competition) for an average of 288.9 yards per game.

The Gorillas piled up 354 rushing yards (on 46 carries, 7.7 ypc) against Northeastern State. It marked Pitt State's highest rushing output since the Gorillas ran for 382 yards in a road win against Truman on Oct. 27, 2012.

… But Don't Overlook PSU Passing Attack
While it's no secret Pitt State's offensive success has been predicated on running the football, the Gorillas have unleashed a potent passing attack to compliment their stalwart running game.

Since the start of the 2004 season, the Gorillas have passed for 23,450 yards and 176 TDs, averaging 225.5 passing yards and 1.7 touchdown passes per game in the last 104 outings.

In 2012, quarterback Tony Abenoja established a new single-season passing record, averaging 233.0 passing yards per game.  As a team, Pitt State passed for 2498 yards (249.8 ypg) and 15 touchdowns on the season a year ago. The Gorillas have averaged 233.0 passing yards in their first two games with seven touchdowns and no interceptions.
    
Quick Strike Offense
The Pitt State offense has exhibited a penchant for being a "quick strike" unit.

During the last nine seasons (2005-13), the Pitt State offense has generated 545 scoring drives (461 TDs, 77 FGs) and averaged just 2:53 of elapsed time per drive.

2005    97 scoring drives (86 TDs, 11 FGs)    2:40 elapsed time    2010    41 scoring drives (34 TDs, 7 FGs)    3:04 elapsed time
2006    79 scoring drives (72 TDs, 7 FGs)    2:14 elapsed time    2011    78 scoring drives (60 TDs, 18 FGs)    2:54 elapsed time
2007    64 scoring drives (55 TDs, 9 FGs)    3:02 elapsed time    2012    51 scoring drives (40 TDs, 11 FGs)    2:58 elapsed time
2008    69 scoring drives (61 TDs, 8 FGs)    3:23 elapsed time    2013    17 scoring drives (15 TDs, 2 FGs)    2:43 elapsed time
2009    49 scoring drives (44 TDs, 5 FGs)    3:21 elapsed time

The Gorillas have been highly successful when they are quick out of the gates.  Pitt State has scored on its opening drive 48 times (40 TDs, 8 FGs) in the last 98 games, posting a 45-3 (.938) record in those games. By contrast, Pitt State is 26-24 (.520) in games it doesn't score on its opening drive during the same span.

Pitt State Displays Prolific Offense
The Pitt State offense has asserted itself as one of the top units in NCAA Division II the past 10 seasons (2004-13).

Pitt State's high octane "multiple choice" offense ranked either No. 1 or No. 2 nationally in both scoring and total offense in three of the last seven seasons.

In 2004, PSU staked its claim as the most prolific offense in the history of NCAA football, leading Division II in scoring (55.8 ppg), rushing (354.7 ypg) and total offense (598.4 ypg).

Pitt State broke the NCAA's 118-year-old all-time all division scoring record with 837 points, besting the old mark of 765 points set by Harvard in 1886.  The Gorillas also broke the all-time NCAA all division records for rushing (5,320 yards) and total offense (8,976 yards) in 2004.

Oklahoma set the previous rushing record (5,196 yards) in 1971, and Texas Tech held the previous total offense mark (7,576 yards) in 2003.

In 2005, Pitt State ranked second nationally in scoring and total offense, averaging 46.8 points and 536.0 total yards per game.  The Gorillas also ranked seventh nationally in rushing, averaging 295.2 yards a game.

In 2006, Pitt State led NCAA Division II in scoring and ranked No. 2 nationally in total offense, averaging 44.8 points and 454.8 total yards per game in 2006.

In 2007, the Gorillas ranked 21st nationally in scoring and 19th nationally in total offense, averaging 37.4 points and 454.2 total yards per game. In 2008, Pitt State ranked 18th nationally in scoring (35.5 ppg) and 21st in the nation in total offense (432.6 ypg).

In 2009, the Pitt State offense averaged 29.4 points and 434.4 total yards per game, while the Gorillas averaged 22.8 points and 357.7 total yards per game in 2010.

In 2011, the Gorillas ranked sixth nationally in scoring (40.2 ppg) and 19th in the country in total offense (448.5 ypg). In 2012, the Gorillas ranked 24th nationally in total offense (454.4 ypg) and 27th in the country in rushing offense (204.6 ypg).

This season Pittsburg State is currently ranked fourth in rushing offense (357.5 ypg) and sixth in total offense (590.5 ypg).

All-Time Winningest Football Programs
Pittsburg State is the all-time winningest NCAA Division II football program.  The Gorillas, who are in their 105th season of intercollegiate competition, have compiled a 665-329-48 overall record, winning 66.1 percent of their 1,042 all-time games.

Pittsburg State is one of just 18 NCAA Division II institutions to have recorded 500 all-time victories and the Gorillas are just one of three schools to have reached the 600-win plateau.  Tuskegee is second on the all-time list with 642 victories, followed by Hillsdale (603), Central Oklahoma (592) and Texas A&M-Kingsville (589).

Dreiling Climbs Career Tackles Chart
Junior linebacker Nate Dreiling continues to climb both the Pitt State and MIAA career tackles charts. Dreiling (6-4, 228) has posted double-digit tackles in 24 of 38 career games for the Gorillas.

The Hutchinson/Victoria, Kan., native now has 401 (10.5 pg) career tackles. He needs 70 stops to become PSU's all-time tackles leader.  Dreiling trails only former All-American Chris Brown (470) on the career list.

Dreiling needs 16 tackles to break into the top 10 on the MIAA's all-time tackle chart. Truman's Marti Rave (1977-79) holds the conference career tackle mark with 489 stops.

PSU Career Tackles    Total                               MIAA Career Tackles    Total
    1.    Chris Brown, 1992-95    470                     1.    Marti Rave, Truman, 1977-79    489
    2.    Nate Dreiling, 2011-pres.    401                2.    Zach Watkins, WU, 2006-09    473
    3.    Chris Brown, Pitt State, 1992-95    470
                                                                            Nate Dreiling, Pitt State, 2011-pres.    401

Abenoja Cracks Top 10 List
Junior quarterback Tony Abenoja moved into the top 10 list for career records for Pitt State quarterbacks during the past 29 seasons with Pitt State's 2-0 start to the season.

Abenoja improved to 9-3 (.750) as the Gorillas starter.

Pitt State quarterbacks have combined to win 81.4 percent of their games since the start of the 1985 season, posting a combined 279-63-2 record.

Abenoja garnered MIAA Offensive Player of the Week honors for the second time in his career after his play in the season opener vs. NSU on Sept. 7.

For the season, he has completed 37 of 48 passes (.771) for 439 yards (219.5 ypg) and six touchdowns with no interceptions (195.2 passer rating). He also has rushed the ball 19 times for 141 yards (7.4 ypc) and two scores, averaging 290.0 yards of total offense per game. Abenoja currently ranks fifth in Division II in passing efficiency.

Brown Chasing PSU Receiving, All-Purpose Records
Senior wide receiver/return specialist John Brown continued his pursuit of Pitt State's all-time receiving record with a four-catch, 47-yard performance in the Gorillas' game against Central Oklahoma last Saturday (Sept. 14).

Brown (5-11, 170) already holds the Pitt State career receptions record (134) and he has 2,314 career receiving yards. The Homestead, Fla., native now needs 208 yards to surpass Ronnie West, the only receiving in Division II history to capture the Harlon Hill Trophy, atop the Gorillas receiving chart.

Brown also broke into the top five on Pitt State's career all-purpose yards listin the season opener against Northeastern State. He now has 4,645 all-purpose yards. He needs 43 yards to move into fourth place on that list.

PSU Career Receiving    Rec    Yards
    1.    Ronnie West, 1990-91    123    2521
    2.    John Brown, 2011-pr.    134    2314

PSU Career All-Purpose    Rush    Rec    PR    KR    Yards
    1.    Ronald Moore, 1989-92    5776    318    0    1084    7178

    3.    Monte Weathers, 1984-87    3852    295    686    1932    6764    
    4.    Darren Dawson, 1988-1991    4565    86    0    36    4687
    5.    John Brown, 2011-pr.    306    2314    823    1202    4645

Seybold Ranks Among MIAA Leaders
Sophomore running back Jeff Seybold, Jr. ranks among the MIAA leaders in both rushing and scoring.

Seybold, Jr. (5-11, 208) currently ranks seventh in the league in rushing (95.5 ypg) and tied for third place in the conference in scoring (12.0 ppg).

The Lincoln, Neb., native has rushed the ball a team-leading 21 times for 191 yards and three touchdowns. He is averaging 9.1 yards per carry. Seybold also has caught seven passes for 31 yards and a touchdown.

For his career, Seybold has rushed the ball 84 times for 490 yards (5.8 ypc) and five touchdowns.

Disney Enjoys Two-Sack Outing
Junior linebacker Tyler Disney continues to post solid numbers for the Gorillas.

Disney (6-1, 214) made four tackles with a fumble recovery and an interception in Pitt State's lopsided win vs Central Oklahoma.

The Stilwell, Kan., native has posted 11 tackles with 2.0 quarterback sacks, a fumble recovery and an interception this season. He has made 71 tackles with 4.5 tackles-for-loss and 3.0 quarterback sacks in26 career games.

Odds & Ends
    •    Junior place kicker Connor Frazell has coverted 13 of 18 (.722) career field goals and 53 of 56 (.946) career PATs.
    •    Pitt State has scored on the opening drive of each of its first two games this season.  The Gorillas also have executed their
        2-minute offense perfectly at the end of the first half of both contests, going 62 yards in six plays and 1:03 elapsed to score
        a TD vs. NSU and going 40 yards in four plays and 49 seconds elapsed to score a TD vs. UCO.

Scouting the Bearcats
SBU enters Saturday's action averaging 462.0 yards of total offense, including 364.0 passing yards per game.

Junior quarterback Willie Tindal (5-10, 187) leads the MIAA averaging 350.5 ypg passing and 369.0 total yards per game. The Fort Lauderdale, Fla., native has tallied 701 yards on 43-of-69 (.623) passing with five touchdowns and two interceptions.

Junior wide receiver Derwyn Lauderdale (5-10, 175) has hauled in 19 receptions for 338 yards and three touchdowns. He currently ranks first in the MIAA in receptions and second in receiving yards per contest.

ViaVia Manuma (5-11, 230) and Robert McWright (6-0, 220) split carries in the Bearcat backfield. Manuma, a sophomore from American Samoa, tallied 70 yards on 15 carries after missing the team's first game.

Senior linebacker Shaquille Shedd (6-2, 240) leads the Bearcats on defense with 22 tackles (10 solo) on the season. Senior defensive back Ivan Hodges (5-10, 185) has recorded two interceptions to go along with 13 tackles (seven solo) to start the season.  

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